Kochi International Airport: Part 1: Arrival

After leaving half our group behind in Goa, the rest of us made the journey to Kochi, in the southern state of Kerala. Seeing as our flight left around 4am, we decided to just stay awake until we checked in at the Goa airport and boarded our flight to Kochi (with a stopover in Bangalore).

Needless to say, we were exhausted and delirious, to the point of cognitive intoxication (I just made that up, but it sounds cool…and kind of real). Meaning we felt like we were drunk or high on something, although no such substance had actually entered our bodies. Everything was hilarious. Everything reduced us to body-shaking fits of laughter and near pants-wetting.

Boarding the flight from Bangalore to Kochi, I think the majority of us immediately fell asleep, before the plane was airborne. Even though the flight was only about an hour long, we were still given a meal (this seems to be the case with all the airlines in India). So I unwrapped my cheese sandwich and began to chew. In my sleep deprived and inebriated state, I looked over at Emma in the next row and locked eyes with her as I slowly chewed my cheese sandwich. Imagine a cow, half sleeping, trying to digest some hay. That was me. And it wasn’t even funny until we had both disembarked and realised how weird that non-verbal exchange had been. Just staring at someone and lazily chewing on a cheese sandwich. We reenacted it multiple times throughout the rest of the trip.

Maybe it’s only funny to us.

The Kochi International Airport, I have concluded, is only named as such because it has one flight to Bangkok. Technically, that makes it “international”. Otherwise, it seems to be all domestic. This is, hands down, the smallest and most hilarious airport I have ever been to and it will probably hold that title for the rest of my life.

The luggage carousels. In the arrival area of the Kochi International Airport, there are two luggage carousels. One weaves in and out of the terminal, like a snake. You could pull back the curtains and watch the airport staff load bags onto the conveyor. You could probably shake their hand.  A few of us, mainly Emma, might have seriously contemplated climbing on top of it and making our way around the terminal, sitting “meditation style”.
The second luggage carousel …actually carousel isn’t the right word. Maybe conveyor? The second luggage distribution apparatus is just one straight line that falls off the end. If you don’t pick up your bag in time, you can just pick it up at the end, off the floor. I found this hilarious. Even writing this, I am giggling!

This is the one that our bags would come from. We waited about 45 minutes for our bags, from a flight that held about 12 people. It seems the larger airplanes take priority at Kochi, because after the first few pieces of luggage came down the conveyor, it stopped. Then the bags from the big flight came out on the snake-like carousel. And THEN the rest of the bags from our flight were unloaded. At this point, we mostly recognized each other backpacks, so we were able to just grab them all and load up the trolleys.

British Steph’s (we also have a Canadian Steph) backpack came down the conveyor and sitting on top, quite precariously, was a single shoe. A black runner to be more specific. Confused and, need I remind you, delirious, I picked up the shoe and looked at our group. Through the laughter, I asked, “Who’s shoe is this?!” Emma pipes up, “That’s Gemma’s!”
In my memories, Gemma moved in slow motion. She looks at me, then at the shoe in my hand and her face just falls. “Ohhh no.”

The mystery was solved almost immediately when we saw Gemma’s backpack…the small front zip had broken and there was nothing inside.The weirdest part of this story though…Gemma had not lost the other shoe. She had packed the two shoes in separate parts of her bag. This still baffles me, although it was obviously a smart decision on her part.

After meeting our new group for the last part of this trip, we headed out for supper (Malabar Fish Curry – yumm!) and a stop at the fruit stand. There’s always money in the banana stand.

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